11 Great Barbell Exercises (Video)

11 Great Barbell Exercises 1

If you head to your local gym, you will no doubt see plenty of barbells lying around. Barbells are a great fitness tool that give most of your major upper body and lower body muscles a workout, essentially helping to improve both strength and stamina. These exercises are some of the top ways to take advantage of what a simple set of barbells can offer you.


Grab the bar with a medium grip. Put your feet directly under the bar, get under it and put it between your traps and rear shoulder muscles (“low bar”).Unrack the bar by Squatting up. Take a big breath, hold it and Squat. Hold your breath at the bottom.Lock your hips and knees at the top.


Deadlifts are one of the best exercises in your arsenal; you’ve just gotta know how to do ’em right. In this video we show you how, going over technique, form and how to perform the perfect Deadlift!

Standing Curl

Make sure your feet are a moderate distance apart. Make sure your underhand grip on the barbell is slightly wider than the width of your shoulders. Keep your elbows pressed closely to each side of you and curl both hands inwards until you fully contract your biceps. Complete three sets of between five and nine repetitions to help add mass to your biceps.

Reverse Curl

Instead of grasping the barbell using an underhand grip, place your hands over the barbell using an overhand technique. Just like with the standard curl, keep your elbows tight to your sides before pulling the barbell up towards your chest. Lower the barbell slowly once you reach your chest on the upward motion. Three sets of between seven and eleven repetitions works best to build muscle mass on both your biceps and forearms.

Wrist Curls

Rest both of your arms on a flat bench with your wrists placed firmly down and your palms facing upwards. Make sure your palms are a little way over the edge of the bench you’re using. Relax both of your wrists and curl your hands up as you lift the barbell and pull it towards your forearms. The trick is to remain steady throughout this challenging exercise. Performs in sets of three and don’t count the repetitions, just continue until you’re tired. A good exercise for building forearm mass.

Bench Press

A routine exercise for beginners is the bench press and it helps to develop chest muscle mass. Keep your body flat while laying on a bench and clasp the barbell with a hand grip that’s approximately shoulder width apart. Inhale as you lower the barbell to your chest, keeping your elbows close to your sides at all times. Exhales as you push the weight back upwards. Perform in sets of three with eight to ten repetitions.

Close Grip Bench Press

Use the same method as with the classic bench press except move your hands to within 6-8 inches of each other. Complete three sets of between ten and fifteen repetitions if possible.

Incline Bench Press

An inclined bench will help you to perform presses that specifically help to build upper chest muscles. To help build the most mass, keep your hand grip as close to the center of the barbell as you can manage when performing an incline bench press.

Overhead Press

You can complete this exercise either sitting or standing and you can lower the barbell either behind you or in front of you – there’s plenty of variation available with this exercise. Use a grip that’s slightly wider than your shoulder width and lower the weight down to your front or to behind your neck. To effectively build your shoulder muscles, complete three sets of between eight and twelve repetitions.

Upright Row

Useful for building your muscle mass and trap muscles. Use an overhand grip with a shoulder width and simply bring the weight up to your chin. Complete three sets of nine to fifteen reps.

Bent Over Row

To help strengthen your back muscles, do the bent over row exercise. Use the same wider than shoulder width grip that you do for most exercises and pull the weight up towards your midsection. Use an underhand grip, keep your knees bent slightly and your body leaning forwards before pulling your arms back and drawing the barbell into your waist.